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Chardonnay

Learn about Chardonnay — taste profile, popular regions and more ...

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While practically every country in the wine producing world grows it, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. As far as cellar potential, white Burgundy rivals the world’s other age-worthy whites like Riesling or botrytized Semillon. California is Chardonnay’s second most important home, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia and South America are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

Tasting Notes for Chardonnay

Chardonnay is a dry, white wine. When Chardonnay grapes are planted on cool sites, the resulting wine's flavors tend towards grapefruit, lemon zest, green apple, celery leaf and wet flint, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of melon, peach and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut and spice, while malolactic fermentation imparts a soft and creamy texture.

Perfect Food Pairings for Chardonnay

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with flaky white fish with herbs, scallops, turkey breast and soft cheeses. Richer Chardonnays marry well with lobster, crab, salmon, roasted chicken and creamy sauces.

Sommelier Secrets for Chardonnay

Since the 1980s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has swung in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a similar bright and acid-driven style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy this lighter style.

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  • Kalin Cuvee LV Chardonnay 1993 Front Label
    Kalin Cuvee LV Chardonnay 1993
    Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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    • Sanford Estate Chardonnay 1993
      Chardonnay from Central Coast, California
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      • Chalone Reserve Chardonnay 1993
        Chardonnay from California
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        • Frescobaldi Pomino IL Benefizio Chardonnay 1993 Front Label
          Frescobaldi Pomino IL Benefizio Chardonnay 1993
          Chardonnay from Tuscany, Italy
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          • Sonoma-Cutrer Founders Reserve Chardonnay (5L) 1993 Front Label
            Sonoma-Cutrer Founders Reserve Chardonnay (5L) 1993
            Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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            • Kalin Chardonnay Cuvee LD  1993 Front Label
              Kalin Chardonnay Cuvee LD 1993
              Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
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              • Joseph Drouhin Puligny-Montrachet Pucelles Premier Cru 1993  Front Label
                Joseph Drouhin Puligny-Montrachet Pucelles Premier Cru 1993
                Chardonnay from Puligny-Montrachet, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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                • Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Montrachet 1993
                  Chardonnay from Puligny-Montrachet, Cote de Beaune, Cote d'Or, Burgundy, France
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